Two new universities to open by 2014

2012-04-24 19:09

Cape Town - Two new universities are expected to open within two years, Higher Education and Training Minister Blade Nzimande said on Tuesday.

Speaking during debate on his budget vote in the National Assembly, he said he had now received reports from the two task teams appointed to investigate appropriate models for new universities in Mpumalanga and the Northern Cape.

The project team had recommended sites to be seats of these universities.

"I plan to announce the seat of learning of each new institution in approximately three months’ time, once the full assessments have been done and in consultation with the president and relevant stakeholders.

"I remain committed that the first intake of these two new universities will be at the start of the academic year 2014," Nzimande said.

Work was also underway to establish Medunsa as a separate, self-standing university of health sciences.


"Beyond this, we are looking at other opportunities for expanding the training of medical doctors and other health professionals, including animal health professionals.

"I have therefore asked some of the universities to urgently provide me with concrete plans to expand in this regard."

The department had been holding discussions with various professional councils with a view to producing sufficient graduates and providing them with work experience and support to ensure that they became registered professionals.

"We want to eliminate all forms of gate-keeping in the production of professionals," Nzimande said.

While many universities were stable and effective, some of the former "bantustan" universities were weak and needed considerable effort and resources to strengthen them.

Some had had to be placed under administration with a view to strengthening their governance and management, and consequently their academic capabilities.

Infrastructure development

Over the next two years, R3.8bn had been earmarked for universities’ overall infrastructure development, prioritising historically disadvantaged institutions.

Of the R3.8bn infrastructure allocation, an amount of R1.6bn had been set aside specifically for historically disadvantaged institutions.

"On the academic front, my department is committed to increasing the production of graduates in engineering, the natural sciences, human and animal health sciences, and teacher education in line with my performance agreement with the president.

"We are engaging with Higher Education South Africa and the deans of relevant faculties to accelerate, especially black and women graduate output in these areas."

As a consequence of the study on the humanities and social sciences that Professor Ari Sitas and Dr Sarah Mosoetsa had been commissioned to undertake, and to ensure that these important disciplines were not neglected, a National Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences would soon be established.

To help tackle the problems faced by students wanting to enrol at a university, a National Information and Application System would be established soon.

This would centralise applications, so that students would not have to apply to multiple universities, each with its own application fees.

The new system would also centralise National Student Financial Aid Scheme applications.

"I have appointed a project steering committee to advise me on this issue," Nzimande said.

  • bluzulu - 2012-04-24 19:20

    Congrats ...We are moving forward,

      Squeegee - 2012-04-24 19:50

      How are we going to be forced to pay for this?

      bluzulu - 2012-04-24 19:53

      Complain that nothing gets built ...Complain when institutions are built, Can never win....That's why we just don't bother with the Whinging and Whining

      Farmworker - 2012-04-24 19:58

      @Squeegee - don't act like you are the only tax paying citizen. As long as my tax money goes to a good course I don't mind at all

      Tsotsi - 2012-04-24 20:58

      Just like they promised.Together we can do more. #Power to the people,#The war for Economic freedom continues though

      Benn - 2012-04-25 03:54

      More useless BA graduates- High expectations and unployable, due to low standards. Qualifications will only be recognised in Africa. Only one thing worse than masses of unemployed and that is masses of unemployed, unemployable "graduates". If you dont believe me, go into Africa. Yet another African "solution" which is destined to fail.

      bluzulu - 2012-04-25 08:12

      Pessimist............GO AWAY, Probably the same detractors that said RSA can't host the largest event in the world, Who are these detractors? Scroll down the page for these answers.

      Rob - 2012-04-25 09:02

      Why bother, 90% of the stew-dents dont deserve to be given this opportunity & of that 90% @ least 60% will engage in student union action against the University & cause millions of rands worth of damage to the institution. Rather build trade schools & force these youngsters to learn a trade. Most of them are not going to pass @ varsity anyway & are wasting valuble time & space to more deserving youngsters who have achieved great marks in matric.

  • Morne - 2012-04-24 19:21

    Ill bet you, there will be some refugees!

  • Bill - 2012-04-24 19:31

    The better educated our youth, the better the future of this country! Now, what are we going to do about an education system that says that a 30% mark in a Matric exam is good enough? On the one hand we are striving for a better education for all, and on the other hand we are letting our youth believe that that having a 30% grasp of the scholastic material is sufficient to equip them for life. As Prof Jonathan Jansen says - It is political theatre! Do you want an doctor or lawyer that only understands 30% of the stuff he or she is supposed to advise you on?

      Jack - 2012-04-24 20:18

      I wonder if the 30% matric pass rate is retroactive? In which case I passed Matric with flying colours ans should now get a varsity exemption! - 2012-05-23 14:15

      that's a farce! that's why the rate of university drop-outs is inclining.

  • Farmworker - 2012-04-24 19:47

    I hope they gonna be affordable and still produce good quality graduates

  • Kolobe - 2012-04-24 19:50

    Thanks anc

      Grootrot - 2012-04-24 21:31

      Yip, Kolobe, for the idea you must answer the ANC, for the physical putting in place of these two universities, you also owe the taxpayers of SA a thanks.

      bluzulu - 2012-04-25 08:09

      Geez.....Even when an ANC government builds educational institutions, It has Connotations . Tax payer's money build RSA infrastructure, Who else would?

      Grootrot - 2012-04-25 09:00

      Bluzulu, the government is, as you say, ANC led, but it is the government of the whole of South Africa. The functioning of the state is not a responsibility of the ANC, the ANC is only a political party and we have a seperation between party and state. The functioning of the state is made possible by policies and decisions made by government AND by normal citizen who vote, pay taxes, play an active role in civil society etc. The building of these universities is part of a functioning state that is made possible by all parties that (still) make the state functionable. Fortunately for us, that is not all left to the ANC. After 18 years of democracy, this very ANC government could not do anything useful for Walter Sisuly University in Mtata. If you can lobby that we don't pay taxes for these disfunctioning tertiary institutions(or schools), but that the ANC pay for it from its membership fees, then and then only can you give credit to only an ANC led government.

      bluzulu - 2012-04-25 12:03

      I don't agree, We are all allowed skewed perspectives in this Democracy I suppose.

  • Sechaba - 2012-04-24 19:58

    I hope he was not speaking after some dinner where red wine is served. Remember Julius Malema said, we must not take Blade Nzimande seriously because he drinks too much red wine. After the insults he diverted towards the public protector I think Juju was right.

  • Willie - 2012-04-24 20:07

    Minister, commendable if international accepted academic standards are applied and concentration on what SA needs,chemistry, engineering, mathematics, physics, management, medicine, people sciences and not a further over supply of soft degrees that ads little value to eliminate the knowledge and skills shortage

  • Xavier7034 - 2012-04-24 20:18

    Nzimande attended the Roman Catholic School, Henryville, and then Plessiers Lower Primary School before going to Mthethomusha School in Edendale, the first school in the area established under the new Bantu education system. He matriculated in 1975 at Georgetown High, Edendale. He completed his Psychology Honours degree at the University of Natal, Pietermaritzburg, in 1980. His Masters degree is in Industrial Psychology (1981) and more recently he has been awarded a PhD for a thesis in the field of personnel management from the University of Natal.

  • tnemalumane - 2012-04-24 20:19

    I hope dis will not be another waste of state resources,Cos ain't no quality learners dis day.

      moruthane - 2012-04-24 21:31

      Whatever that you are smoking is torturing your mental well-being...

  • sasekile - 2012-04-24 21:25

    This is the best news I have heard today, lets give our government the benefit of doubt. For once lets stop whinning

  • FinalJustice - 2012-04-24 21:55

    Can I hope that their qualifications will not be as useless as those from the University of the North, and Qwa-Qwa? I have both with no International recognition.

  • Cassandra Olivier - 2012-04-24 22:03

    What about the rest of the country where there is no schools the poor areas the ones that you wasting money on for name changes

  • Masala Ramabulana - 2012-04-24 22:36

    The tender boys must be very happy with this one, 14 billion worth, politician also very happy with potential 1.4 billion in bribes

  • creaturemabanga - 2012-04-25 06:34

    it was a mistake to algamate Mendusa.

  • anthro45 - 2012-04-25 06:52

    Ah, fresh stuff to be broken down and plundered.

      bluzulu - 2012-04-25 12:04

      Detractor here,

  • darryn.havenga - 2012-04-25 08:23

    Well done Mr Minister - we need these institutions!

  • shaun.usher.7 - 2012-06-05 22:37

    Firstly, the building of more universities is a good way forward since it allows more matric graduates to receive higher education and thus improve those peoples lives hopefully. The issue I have is that why is the government starting at the top? Tertiary = the highest point of education for a country yet surely though if you want to build something you start at the bottom? Our basic education system is not as good as it should be especially in the Eastern Cape and KZN, that is our lowest tier of education and it handles the most amount of people and so it moves up till we get to tertiary but if the foundation is not there how do you expect the top to be structurally sound? Once again I am glad more universities are being built, i just wish the government would realise that it's starting point for better education is at primary education and not tertiary. The earlier you groom learners the better they will become but not just handle the end product.

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